Scientists studied polar bears on islands of Yamal
16:44 13 сентября 2019
Категории: News in English
Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Russian center for exploration of the Arctic with support of Rosneft conducted research on polar bears on Beliy and Vilkitsky Islands (Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug). The work was fulfilled as part of the integrated scientific expedition “Yamal — Arctic 2019”.
The research was aimed at seasonal evaluation of distribution of the number of polar bears on the islands during the ice-free period and also at study of state of the bear population on the territory of Yamal. According to the office of information policy of Rosneft, during helicopter flights the scientists met three animals on Beliy Island and four — on Vilkitsky Island. The experts defined the linear size, age and weight of the bears. In addition, the zoologists took biological samples from them. The results of immunological, microbiological and molecular genetic studies of all the selected biological samples will allow revealing the level of content and composition of anthropogenic substances in organisms of the polar bears and assessing state of health of the studied individuals. These studies are part of the comprehensive program of Rosneft on support and protection of polar bears.
The scientists put collars with satellite data transmitters on the animals to study their routes and activity. Use of the Russian-made satellite telemetry allows obtaining practically real-time information about the speed of movement, the traveled distance, as well as about what habitats the polar bear prefers and how it reacts to environmental changes. In addition, it is planned to conduct comparative analysis of the received data with the information on movements of two female bears, on which satellite collars were put on the Islands of Shokalsky and Vilkitsky in 2018.
Rosneft pays special attention to protection and study of the polar bear. The company conducts their research within integrated arctic expeditions, using modern technologies. In 16 zoos of the country Rosneft provides maintenance — full feeding, veterinary service and habitat enrichment — of 35 polar bears: 18 grownup females, 13 grownup males and 4 cubs under the age under two years old.
According to experts, now the number of these animals on the planet makes from 22 to 31 thousand. Polar bears inhabit the entire arctic basin, including its coasts and islands. There are no geographical boundaries for the species. Sea ice, availability of places suitable for females to establish birth dens and availability of food are the main factors determining their distribution.